Horst Wildemann: German automotive logistics guru
At the end of 20th century, Univ.-Prof. Dr. Dr. habil. Dr. h.c. Horst Wildemann (*1942) was seen as the leading expert for Japanese and American logistics and production processes. One of his greatest achievements was his pioneering work in the German-speaking countries to promote the use of just-in-time production and logistics concepts. He adapted the originally Japanese philosophy to European conditions, and "introduced" and optimised it in Germany's automotive manufacturing companies. This underlines his status as the father of the German "just-in-time" concept and one of the most knowledgeable experts on the German and international automotive industry. It was in recognition of these achievements that he was inducted into the Logistics Hall of Fame in 2004.
|Field||automotive industry and logistics, production logistics, management, science|
|Born||January 4, 1942 in Lodz, Poland|
|Current position||Professor of Economics at the TU München (Munich Institute of Technology), Munich, Germany|
|Induction into the Logistics Hall of Fame||2004|
1942 Born on January 4 in Lodz, married, 2 daughters, interests: golf, modern art, sculpture, classical music
1948 to 1956 Secondary school, then casual worker and flight from the GDR
1958 to 1961 Training as a toolmaker
1960 to 1968 Student of Mechanical Engineering at Cologne University of Applied Sciences and the RWTH University of Aachen (awarded a degree in Engineering)
1961 to 1963 Toolmaker at Eumuco AG, Leverkusen
1967 to 1971 Mechanical engineer at Ford AG, Cologne
1968 to 1972 Student of Business Management at Cologne University, awarded a degree in Business Management
1974 Awarded a PhD (Dr.rer.pol.) by Cologne University; followed by a post-doctoral qualification in Business Management
1974 to 1980 Periods spent abroad at the Int. Management Institute in Brussels, the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, and the University of Indianapolis, Indianapolis, post-doctoral scholarship from the German Research Foundation (DFG)
1980 Post-doctoral qualification in Cologne
1980 to 1981 University of Bayreuth, Chair of Business Management and Industrial Management
1981 to 1989 University of Passau, Chair of Business Management with the focus on the production industry
Since 1989 TU München (Munich Institute of Technology), Chair of Business Management with the focus on logistics
2004 Induction into the Logistics Hall of Fame
- Univ.-Prof. Dr. Dr. habil. Dr. h.c. Wildemann is one of the outstanding figures in contemporary business management and logistics, and is the "leading light" of the logistics professors of worldwide renown.
- Back in the early 80s, the eloquent Professor at the provincial University of Passau was preoccupied with two questions: why are the Japanese car makers so successful and how can Japanese management principles be transferred to European conditions? Once he hit upon the answer, the peace and tranquillity in the sleepy town on the Danube came to an abrupt end. Thousands made the pilgrimage to Passau to hear about his solutions. And the provincial Professor became the production and logistics guru of the German automotive industry.
- His work (roughly 38 books and 500 essays; organisation of logistics conferences, seminars and workshops) in the field of logistics, supply chain management, purchasing, strategic investment planning, production organisation and the planning, assessment and introduction of new technologies is unique in Germany. The implementation of these concepts, in particular in the automotive and automotive supply industry as well as in the fields of mechanical and electrical engineering, have played a key part in making German industry as strong as it is today.
- It was Wildemann who like no other encouraged managers to think in logistical categories. He was the co-initiator of the International Supply Chain Conference of BVL and has been staging his own conference, the Munich Management Colloquium, which is considered one of the top management conferences, since 1990.
- Wildemann is also a successful entrepreneur. He has co-founded a number of companies, including the TCW Transfer-Centrum business consulting firm with 80 employees and where he is Managing Partner.
- Wildemann is an internationally renowned specialist and independent expert for logistics issues.
- He has been Chairman of the Independent Expert Committee for the Bavarian Quality Award since 1991. He is a Board member in multiple companies as well as a Supervisory Board member; he holds a wide range of offices in national and international scientific bodies, and has rejected calls to the universities in Stuttgart-Hohenheim, Dortmund, FU Berlin (Free University of Berlin) and TU Berlin (Berlin Institute of Technology), the University of Indianapolis, the University of St. Gallen, and the University of Southern California in Los Angeles.
- Distinctions: ZfB Author of the Year. Medal of the Free State of Bavaria, 2001: First-Class Federal Order of Merit. Awarded an honorary doctorate by Klagenfurt University in 2003.
Photos: Erwin Fleischmann